The Nigerian Universities Students Association have criticised the exclusion of graduate nurses from the internship programmes organised for medical science graduates.
The More than 200 final-year students of nursing, who took their protest to the Federal secretariat in Abuja, expressed disappointment that the federal ministry of health has not taken the internship of nurses serious in spite of the approval granted by the National Universities Commission.
Nursing students are required to undergo a year of internship in clinical studies, reportedly approved by the National Universities Commission in 2010.
But the Nigerian Universities Nursing Students Associations (NUNSA) said delay in implementing the programme has hit its members hardest, denying them of clinical experience and leaving them less privileged than other students of health and medical sciences who undergo housemanship.
One banner the protesters carried read, “So Nigerians how do you feel, when your child is sick and the nurses in charge of your child are not trained; treating your child under ignorance due to lack of full knowledge of what he’s doing?”
Other read, “Internship is the heartbeat of a nurse” and “Internship is the way forward to true professionalism in nursing science”.
NUNSA president, Ozu Frederick, said students graduating in nursing science were “half-baked products” without the internship programme.
Efforts to get a reaction from the ministry of health on the issue proved abortive, the director of press and public affairs at the National Universities Commission, Ibrahim Yakassai, who spoke to Channels Television’s correspondent on phone, confirmed the approval granted to the student nurses but advised them to liaise with the nNursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria.